Best of the Week

Latest

COVID surge overwhelms a Louisiana hospital; AP is there

COVID-19 patient Joan Bronson walks across her hospital room with the help of a physical therapist at Ochsner Medical Center in the New Orleans suburb of Jefferson, La., Aug. 11, 2021. The rapidly escalating surge in COVID-19 infections is once again overwhelming hospitals across the U.S., especially in hot spots such as Louisiana., which is hitting record numbers of coronavirus hospitalizations, driven by the highly infectious delta variant and the state's low vaccination rates. (AP Photo/Stacey Plaisance)

AP_21223689801726_hm-hospital.jpg

New Orleans video journalist Stacey Plaisance produced a timely, moving, all-formats story from a Louisiana COVID-19 ward with a lightning turnaround, getting her video, text and photos to the wire the day after she spent hours at the hospital.

Plaisance was given access to a hospital intensive care unit in Jefferson, Louisiana, expecting to get a few comments and some b-roll. Instead, she ended up spending the most of the day there, interviewing exhausted staff and recovering COVID victims. She spoke to a doctor who was emptying garbage bins and bathing patients to relieve the pressure on nurses. She spoke to a nurse who lost his own father to COVID, and a patient — also a nurse — who didn’t get vaccinated and wants to make sure others don’t follow her lead.

After leaving the hospital,Plaisance immediately went to work,cutting video and writing the text story. By the following afternoon her work was on the wire capturinging the desperation and urgency at the hospital.

The package drew attention amid the current spike in COVID cases. Other news outlets noticed: After Plaisance’s piece appeared, the hospital became the subject of other reporters’ coverage.

Contact us